Saving the Earth While RVing

Back when we lived in our RV fulltime, many people asked us tons of questions about how we afforded it, how we could do it at such a young age, and almost EVERYONE asked if it bothered us that we were using that much fuel to travel.

We had many answers that I don’t think most would even begin to understand, unless you’ve lived or spent time in an RV. First and foremost, it was and is probably the least expensive way to live in the United States. Once the truck and trailer were paid for, the only cost you incur is fuel, food and camp ground fees. You don’t have your monthly utilities bills (i.e. Gas, Water, Cable, Electric, Home Owners Insurance…..etc), except for our phone bill and internet bill which we would have had no matter where we lived.

Most couldn’t even begin to fathom that we could go for 10 days on 40 gallons of water, and that included both of us showering daily, with hot showers too. It was just a different type of shower than you would take when in a stick built house. One that usually empties a 40 gallon hot water heater during the 20 minutes you’re in that shower with the water running non-stop.

We weren’t on Vacation, and we weren’t just driving from Point A to Point B, like most other folks do when they take their yearly vacation. We’d find an area we liked, and spend a week, sometimes up to a month in that area exploring on our bicycles, walking, hiking or riding the motorcycle for transportation. When people ask how many miles we have on our truck after being on the road for 4 years, they’re shocked when I tell them we just turned over the 130,000 mile mark. They all think we’d be pushing 500,000 miles at this point. The thing they don’t realize is we moved very slow, and many times we might not even unhook the truck from the trailer for weeks at a time, even though we’d be sitting still. There was no reason to when you’re in an area that you can walk or bike to everything.

Our footprint and consumption rate was probably at the lowest it had ever been. 40 gallons of water every 10-12 days, rarely did we plug in to shore power to burn fossil fuels for our electricity, and we always ate locally as it was our only option. We were probably in the best shape of our lives and neither of us were attending a gym or working out, we were just simply outside exercising naturally with hikes, biking, paddling and doing things all day long.

I could go on and on trying to explain this in further detail, but while browsing the web, I came across a fellow RVer that posted a very similar blog write-up. Please check out Andy Baird’s blog on this very subject. I think it will shed some light on the topic.

Saving the Earth at 10 mpg

Let me know what you think. I’m also going to look into the Crock-Pot Slow Cooker he mentions. That looks like it would save time and energy when cooking, especially if living off-grid.

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5 Responses to “Saving the Earth While RVing”

  1. Jim and LindaMay 14, 2014 at 12:32 pm #

    Had the same “conversation” with my Son’s girlfriend when we were full-timing. I think I changed her mind about living in an RV. 😉


  2. SteveMay 14, 2014 at 6:18 pm #

    Pat, I couldn’t agree more. I think that people would be blown away by how much less you use in fossil fuels, even by driving something that doesn’t do very well in MPG, compared to what we put into our homes.

  3. JeffMay 22, 2014 at 9:06 pm #

    Hi Pat, I didn’t start reading your part of the blog until Cindy decided to stop writing, but, have appreciated your travels over the years. Anyway, Janet and I will be following y’alls footsteps at the beginning of June and just wanted to say thanks for all the insight that you two have provided. We plan to “slowly” travel as you describe which will help reduce our costs and have purchased a portable solar panel as opposed to a generator. Thanks again!

    • Pat BonishMay 23, 2014 at 12:48 pm #

      I think the ‘Slowly’ part of travel is the best way to travel. Have fun and glad you’ve kept reading

  4. ElizabethOctober 26, 2014 at 3:30 pm #

    I provide rv /boondocking space in Northern Mountains of Pa. if anyone interested or willing to refer please do. It be greatly appreciated, I love rv’s spirit (most). So I decided to use my land to accommodate & have cool convo’s with like minded people.
    heres a check out link

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